Mount Sinai receives $5 million NCI grant to study impact of palliative care programs

The National Palliative Care Research Center, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, has been awarded a $5 million grant from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). According to Dr. Diane Meier, the Principal Investigator of the project, "The study will evaluate the impact of hospital palliative care on the quality of care for cancer patients. It will also create the evidence base necessary to determine which components of palliative care programs are key to their effectiveness."

Palliative care consultation teams have been shown in small preliminary studies to improve the identification and treatment of pain and symptoms; to increase the occurrence of goal setting discussions and appropriate discharge planning; and to improve family satisfaction with care. However, these studies have not explained the structures and processes of care linked to the achievement of these outcomes.

The new multi-million dollar, multi-site study will assess the structure, processes and clinical outcomes of care among hospitalized persons with advanced cancer that receive palliative care consultation team services -- as compared to similar patients receiving usual hospital care. The study will look at palliative care consultation at five hospitals with well-established palliative care consultation teams, utilizing existing National Comprehensive Cancer Network-American Society of Clinical Oncology practice guidelines and protocols for pain and symptom management, patient-care team communication, and transition management.

The five performance sites include:

  • Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY

  • Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA

  • Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI

  • Mount Carmel Health Systems, Columbus, OH

  • University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA


The National Palliative Care Research Center (NPCRC) promotes evidence-based palliative care research in order to improve the care of patients with serious illness, and their families. Located in New York City at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, NPCRC works in partnership with the Center to Advance Palliative Care.


Located in Manhattan, Mount Sinai School of Medicine is internationally recognized for ground-breaking clinical and basic-science research, and innovative approaches to medical education. Through the Mount Sinai Graduate School of Biological Sciences, Mount Sinai trains biomedical researchers with an emphasis on the rapid translation of discoveries of basic research into new techniques for fighting disease. One indication of Mount Sinai's leadership in scientific investigation is its receipt during fiscal year 2005 of $252.2 million. Mount Sinai now ranks 20th among the nation's medical schools in receipt of research support from NIH. Mount Sinai School of Medicine also is known for unique educational programs such as the Humanities in Medicine program, which creates opportunities for liberal arts students to pursue medical school, and instructional innovations like The Morchand Center, the nation's largest program teaching students and physicians with "standardized patients" to become not only highly skilled, but compassionate caregivers. Long dedicated to improving its community, the School extends its boundaries to work with East Harlem and surrounding communities to provide access to health care and educational programs to at risk populations.

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 30 Apr 2016
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